Monday, August 26, 2013

Europe Trip Recap: Potdsam and Schloss Sanssouci

Part 1 of Sunday, May 19, 2013: Another terrible start to the day, for me at least. I woke up at 2 a.m. again and then when I awoke to get the day started, I felt nauseous. It was definitely jet lag that just hit me differently this time.

I choked down this fruit-quark. It was delicious, but when you don't have much of an appetite, food just isn't that appealing in general.

Once I felt like leaving the hotel without getting sick, Mom and I walked to the train station. We purchased a "Tageskarte" or day pass to get out to Potsdam on the S-bahn and then it also allowed us to take the bus to the palace and back for free. Well worth 7 Euros each!

I had been to Berlin before, but never any of the palaces in the vicinity, so I was excited to go somewhere new!

When we arrived at the Potsdam train station, we asked an information booth staffed by two men how long it would take to walk to Schloss Sanssouci. One man laughed back at us (in the funniest way by sort of spitting through his lips in surprise at my bizarre question) and said, 30 minutes or more. I think it would have actually taken longer. He suggested we take the 695 bus out there instead and that's when we also found out our day pass covered the bus far. Score!

Schloss Sanssouci was the summer palace and sanctuary for King Frederick the Great. I love that Sanssouci means "without care." What a great place to get away and forget about the world.

When we got off the bus, we saw this windmill, which made me feel like we were in the Netherlands rather than Germany.

We walked up to the ticket booth while listening to lovely music played by this guy.

We purchased tickets to see the interior for 12 Euros each. No photos were allowed of the inside, unless you purchased a photography badge and I didn't feel like splurging on that.

I snuck a photo of this Warhol of Frederick the Great on my way out of the palace.

The grounds were just gorgeous!

This gate was definitely one of our favorite pieces on the palace grounds.

We ventured down below the palace and looked up to see this amazing view.

Statues were everywhere.

St. George and the dragon.

We walked around some more and saw more buildings in the distance. That is when we realized just how huge the grounds were! Here was the "Chinese House."

Far off in the distance, we saw a building peeking through the trees and bushes and decided to head towards it.

Along the way, we saw these huge mushrooms up in the trees.

And we saw yet more buildings in the distance.

It turned out to be the Neues Palais or "New Palace" on the western end of the royal park of Sanssouci. It's considered to be the last great Prussian Baroque palace.

We didn't go inside the palace, but it was lunch time, so we had to find a place to eat right away because I was getting "hangry." I get really cranky when I am hungry and it's not pretty! I was glad to have an appetite after being so ill earlier that morning.

Mom and I found a little visitor's center with a cafe attached, so we had sandwiches. I tried to eat mostly vegetarian on the trip, so this was just cheese and veggies on some really delicious bread. At this point, I wasn't too sick of sandwiches yet, but would soon grow to become tired of them.

The visitor's center offered advice on how to get back to the train station via the bus and we found the bus stop to wait at nearby. Luckily, there was a nice couple from China/Australia to talk to there and converse about our home countries and where we were going on our travels.

As we were leaving Potsdam, I saw this cute sign and thought that it would have been fun to rent a bike to ride out to Potsdam and see more of the city, which looked really pretty and quaint.

My mom and I really enjoyed the grounds of Schloss Sanssouci and I highly recommend it as a wonderful side trip to get away from the big city of Berlin.

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